Isn’t it such a buzz when you find a place – no matter how small – that is run by passionate people who know their sh*t? And there’s a fluidity between front of house and back of house that’s remarkable. And that’s deliberate. That’s Little Missy Patisserie.
One thing I’d love to know, and that’ll come when I finally get to tackle Oonagh, the chef and owner, is why the weird spaces? It seems very strange to me that the front of house is tiny. Then, there’s a large open prep/baking area with a range of ovens standing at salute on one side. And beyond that, seems to be a dish/cleaning/wet kitchen area at the back.
This all means though, that the dining area allocated for actual paying customers, is minute. Hence the name I guess. I wonder that the original idea was to be wholesale? Especially considering its location: 151 Argyle Street, which although near to Federal Street and the north Hobart precinct, is actually smack in the middle of foodie’s no man’s land.
And it was bloody hard to find. The tiny classic font that is used for the name doesn’t help. I drove past it twice before we spotted the A frame on the footpath. Eureka! And parking around the corner and down a bit, we made our way in and found a spot at the end of a long communal table. Whew!
So speaking of the fluidity between front and back, Little Missy is all so open, with just a small display bench separating the two, that we watched as Una prepped, and baked, and plated. The front is also dwarfed by a big, but necessary, coffee area, with the barista in charge. That’s Betty, and a better barista, or more knowledgeable, I have yet to find.
Lidia, part of our Polish twosome, wanted a long black with soy milk. Vegan is what it’s all about. And Betty was happy to oblige, but warned Lidia that it might split, the soy being averse to hot coffee. So Betty gave us a lesson, spontaneously, and I had to shoot it. Spontaneously.
For us and you, our readers. Mainly because I love to learn something new, and gather that you guys do too. The video is Betty doing her barista thing, with knowledge, and charm, and generosity.
In the meantime, I had to have the leg ham strudel, in feather-light pastry, a comforting blend of cheese and mustard, and real, tasty, thick leg ham. I had to try the custard and plum croissant topped with toasted almonds, but took that home and finished it that afternoon. Both products? Exceptional.
I can see why this little haven gets the plaudits it does. And the prices are reasonable, the two pastries plus a Kombucha ginger bottle of stuff, cost just under $21. And I felt I’d dined like a dainty queen.
Lidia, on the other hand, was disappointed that she really couldn’t find anything to suit her vegan sensibilities, and we motored on to Straight Up, in Liverpool Street, which provided a delicious carrot and couscous salad.
We both finished the day sated, and happy. And I would imagine that finding a pastry shop that caters to strict vegans, so no eggs, no dairy, would be hard. And Oonagh takes a pride in her traditional skills.
And she rules a benevolent queendom where the service is skilled and knowledgeable. Betty is a gem, so even if you are on a strict diet, I would highly recommend going there just for the coffee. It’s that good.
Fresh, delicate, and inviting, are three words I’d use to sum up my experience at Little Missy Patisserie. Would you agree? And I can’t wait to tackle Oonagh and get her take on her pastries and her home away from home.